Real Lives and Lost Lives: Making Sense of ‘Locked in’ Responses to Intimate Partner Homicide

Sandra Walklate, ANNA HOPKINS

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)
49 Downloads (Pure)


The problem of intimate partner homicide is featuring increasingly on national and international policy agendas. Over the last 40 years, responses to this issue have been characterised by
preventive strategies (including ‘positive’ policing; the proliferation of risk assessment tools,
and multi-agency working) and post-event analyses (including police inquiries and domestic
homicide reviews). In different ways, each of these responses has become ‘locked in’ to
policies. Drawing on an analysis of police inquiries into domestic homicides in England and
Wales over a 10-year period, this paper will explore the nature of these ‘locked in’ responses
and will suggest that complexity theory offers a useful lens through which to make sense of
them and the ongoing consistent patterning of intimate partner homicide more generally. The
paper will suggest this lens in embracing what is known and unknown affords a different way
of thinking about and responding to this problem.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)129-143
Number of pages15
JournalAsian Journal of Criminology
Issue number2
Early online date30 Mar 2019
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2019


  • Intimate partner homicide . Complexity theory. Preventing violence against women
  • Complexity Theory
  • Preventing violence against women
  • Intimate partner homicide
  • Complexity theory


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